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Tribute To the Lowly

Old 10-30-14, 09:42 AM
  #1  
jimmuller 
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Tribute To the Lowly

Do you have a "low-end" bike which has served you faithfully, which you enjoy riding regardless of its lack of heritage? Post pics and tell us about it!

Here is my offering, a UO-8 I think I remember I bought in 1972:









It has been upgraded through the decades with (in no particular order) Simplex DT shifters, alloy bar, alloy Simplex seatpost, WTB Speed V saddle, Vx derailleurs, Sugino Maxy crankset, Shimano 600 hubs, Sun M13-II rims, Pasela TG 28mm tires, Zefal HP pump, a bottle cage with "REI" Specialized bottle, MKS Sylvan Road pedals, Jim Blackburn rack, Eclipse front bag, Cat-Eye computer, Union "Schwinn approved" generator, B&M lights, a rear blinky, and most recently a L&M 650-lumen headlight.

It weighs 29 lbs. It has served me well as a commuter these past few years, and as a sport bike in the old days. The Delrin shifters are quite nice, the Vx derailleurs bulletproof. It let me down only once in the past 42 years when the Suntour FW came apart last month. Its ride is smooth but agile, really quite wonderful.

Aztek lugs, here's to you!

So what great "low-end" bike can you show us?
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Old 10-30-14, 10:03 AM
  #2  
John E
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I'll bet we'll see lots of UO-8s in this thread. I originally bought mine for my wife when I worked at a Nishiki-Peugeot dealership in the early 1970s. It started as a $40 bare frame, and the original build included a SunTour VGT rear derailleur, UO-18-style upright handlebars, Schwinn TwinSticks, Japanese Sunshine/Araya alloy wheels (also from my Nishiki Competition), and a TA Professional 3-bolt crankset. Now that she prefers mountain bikes it is my commuter, with a tighter gear range, drops, and barcons.
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Capo: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324
Capo: 1960 Sieger (2), S/N 42624, 42597
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Old 10-30-14, 10:54 AM
  #3  
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Does a Trek 400 count?

Theoretically, the 400 was towards the bottom of the Trek lineup- but it was still a nice 531/Tange frame with decent components. I think my 1986 Trek 400 Elance is my prettiest bike- I've replaced most of the parts on it- added a Blackburn CrossRack, replaced the derailleurs with Suntour XC Pro, the shifters with 6 speed Command Shifters, the levers and brakes with TriColor 600 (and did the cute dual pivot in the front, single in the rear) and I actually changed the wheelst from 700C to 27" to be able to use the TriColor brakes on it. I've swapped a lot of saddles, a couple of Avocet Touring II, Selle Italia Anatomica, Brooks B17 and right now it's sporting a San Marco touring saddle. It's not in these pictures, but I also swapped out the seat post for an SR SP-KC like on the 1985 Trek 620 and 720.

This winter I'm going to try building a wheelset using the Sunshine hubs from these wheels and some nice Weinmann rims. We'll see how that goes.

I'm considering adding a black front rack to support a front bag. I may have a problem with that because of the Command Shifters taking up a lot of space between the ramps.

Despite it's position in the Trek lineup- I think it's a seriously beautiful bike with some really quality stuff hanging off of it.















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Old 10-30-14, 11:04 AM
  #4  
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My Nishiki Marina 12 (courtesy of Pay it Forward) is a fun ride for a heavy bike and also doubles as my indoor trainer bike in the winter



My heavy Peugeot Limestone hybrid that doubles as my touring bike





My tank - 87 Trek 800 Antelope now fitted with 1.75" road tires - it's my "errand, garage sale and don't have any where to be in a hurry bike"



Peugeot PL8

Changed to cotterless crankset and fitted with some tubulars on Super Champion rims it's a real fun ride.

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Old 10-30-14, 11:05 AM
  #5  
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i have a bike so low end that I've been mistaken for homeless. At least I think it was the bikes fault...
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Old 10-30-14, 11:10 AM
  #6  
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That would be my '80 Centurion Elite. I found a brochure on the model saying it was their entry level racer. The only way I'd race it is if everybody else had to (recalling IROC series car racing). It just weighs too much though it has a certain appeal to it. Maybe the barcons and first series Cyclone GT?? Gone is the classic slasher David Lee Roth bar tape.
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Old 10-30-14, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by -holiday76 View Post
i have a bike so low end that I've been mistaken for homeless. At least I think it was the bikes fault...
A Huffy 10 speed with flipped bars??
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Old 10-30-14, 11:13 AM
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CB-2 lowly enough for this thread?
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Old 10-30-14, 11:24 AM
  #9  
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I bought this Trek 800 Mountain Track in about 1995, when I was way out of shape and riding a road bike hurt my back. I rode it for a few months and gave up, leaving it to sit unused in the basement while I put on a few more pounds and got a bit more out of shape. Finally took it out of hibernation about 4 years ago, and it absolutely changed my life. I'm now 80 lbs. lighter and I'm up to 9 or 10 bikes. It now lives in Florida and only gets used when I can spend time there, but I've got a soft spot for it. I think it was less than $200.00 in 1995.
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Old 10-30-14, 11:27 AM
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How about two hybrids, one for NJ and one for MI, my 2014 clunker challenge entry. $25 each before upgrades.



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Old 10-30-14, 11:50 AM
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I don't have any really low end bikes anymore. My lowest would be a 1991 Rocky mountain hammer, with sloppy welding and a so so tube set for the time, though it has some pretty nice period components. The syncros post actually has about 6" of steel post bonded in (long story), but I prefer zero offset and it looks good so live with the weight.

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Old 10-30-14, 11:50 AM
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Bridgestone 300.
My best friend gave it to me, and has been my only bike since. I just got a new wheelset for it.

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Old 10-30-14, 12:14 PM
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Just posted this on another thread a day or two ago. Motobecane Mirage. I want to say 1979 or so. Suntour ratcheting shifters on the stem. Still has the steel rims. Still a smooth riding bike. My son's daily ride.

Bob 's Motobecane by JTRCnLB, on Flickr
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Old 10-30-14, 12:39 PM
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My 1975 Kobe Capri that will have been with me for 40 years next June. I repainted it twice, and it has been everything from a racer to single speed to townie.

It got me to basketball practice in middle school, to class in college and went with me to Hawaii for my first job.

I think it has earned a powder coat to it's original color(purple) and fresh decals this winter.

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Old 10-30-14, 01:05 PM
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My lowly hi-ten CB-2.
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Old 10-30-14, 01:05 PM
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When the Bombs have Dropped, and the Zombie Apocalypse has come and gone...

.
...this is the bike I will be riding:
..................................................
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Old 10-30-14, 02:39 PM
  #17  
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I really liked to ride this lowly BikesDirect Windsor Fens. It had a very smooth ride and seemed to stay in tune better than my other bikes. I recently swapped the parts to a smaller frame to build a bike for my new daughter in law, which turned out very successful - she's really hooked now.

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Old 10-30-14, 03:59 PM
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Really loooooooooooow. Scary to think I have bottom feeders below this.




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Old 10-30-14, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by John E View Post
I'll bet we'll see lots of UO-8s in this thread. . . .
+ 1. They're great all around bikes.
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Old 10-30-14, 04:04 PM
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1993 BB-1; straight gauge chrome moly frame with dura ace cranks, brooks b-72, deore xt thumb shifters, cheap derailleurs, and xt hubs. I picked up the bike for $30 from CL but most of the parts were toast. I built it up from my parts bin but I did splurge on the MKS lambda pedals (they're ugly but work great). It's my trusty foul weather commuter:

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Old 10-30-14, 04:23 PM
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Seems to be becoming a Trek thread
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Old 10-30-14, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by David Newton View Post
Bridgestone 300.
My best friend gave it to me, and has been my only bike since. I just got a new wheelset for it.

Those ride great, nice lively frame.
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Old 10-30-14, 05:42 PM
  #23  
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I have had two bikes lower than the two UO-8s -- a gaspipe Sears Free Spirit and a Varsity. Neither was much fun to ride, but then again I'll bet they would not have developed a cracked chainstay, as my white UO-8 did. A coworker had given me the UO-8 shortly after I broke the frame on my American Eagle Semi-Pro [Nishiki Competition]. Refitted with the Nishiki's wheels and an aluminum crankset, the UO-8 was almost as light and provided an arguably more resilient ride quality. The PKN-10, now the property of my elder son, was noticeably nicer than either and remains one of my favorite bikes I have ever owned, although it is not exactly lowly.
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Old 10-30-14, 06:46 PM
  #24  
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My current favorite is probably also the lowliest of all my 'riders'. I don't know the exact model, but with stamped dropouts, high-ten tubing and cottered cranks it will have been at or near the bottom of the line-up. I bought it because it's my size, has a cool color and seemed to be in pretty good shape. It turned out to be a very smooth and comfortable ride and the Huret transmission is a joy to shift. It's relatively new to the stable, but definitely a keeper.

As bought in August:



After rebuilding:



Enjoying it touring in France in September:

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Old 10-30-14, 06:48 PM
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This pretty much describes all my bikes - the "lowly" part. None of mine are high end, except maybe the Motobecane Grand Jubile. It was mid-high end in it's day. Anyway I haven't had any of mine for so long as to say it's served me faithfully. To me, that implies years of service. So far I guess my 1985 Sekai Bigfoot is solid and has never had issues, as well as my 1992 Hard Rock Ultra. All of my bikes, thus far, haven't let me down. Sekai Bigfoot Hard Rock Ultra
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